• Friday, April 12, 2024

HEADLINE STORY

India hits out at Pakistan for raising Kashmir at UN meet

India exercised its ‘Right of Reply’ to respond to Turkiye and Pakistan after the two countries made references to Kashmir in their statements

File photo of shikara boats moored at Dal Lake ahead of the G20 summit in Srinagar (Photo: Getty Images)

By: Shajil Kumar

India has refuted Pakistan’s allegations of human rights violations in Jammu and Kashmir in the UN Human Rights Council and countered it by highlighting Islamabad’s poor track record in treating its minorities.

At the 55th Regular Session of the UN Human Rights Council, India exercised its ‘Right of Reply’ to respond to Turkiye and Pakistan after the two countries made references to Kashmir in their statements.

The first secretary in the permanent mission of India to the UN in Geneva Anupama Singh took the floor and said, “Firstly, we regret the comment made by Turkiye on a matter that is an internal affair of India and hope that it would refrain from making unsolicited comments on our internal matters in the future.”

Coming down heavily on Pakistan, the Indian diplomat said it was unfortunate that Pakistan was misusing the Council’s platform to make “patently false allegations against India”.

She reiterated that Jammu and Kashmir is an integral part of India and any measures taken in the region are internal matters.

“The constitutional measures taken by the Government of India to ensure socio-economic development and good governance in the Union Territory of Jammu and Kashmir are matters internal to India. Pakistan has no locus standi to pronounce on matters that are internal to India,” the diplomat said.

Singh then pointed out that Pakistan’s own human rights record was abysmal.

She highlighted incidents of persecution against minorities, such as the brutal attacks on the Christian community in Jaranwala city in 2023.

She also drew attention to Pakistan’s support for UNSC-sanctioned terrorists. This was about terror outfit leaders like Lashkar-e-Taiba (LeT) founder Hafiz Saeed and Jaish-e Mohammed (JeM) chief Masood Azhar enjoying the backing of the government in Pakistan.

She said such a country commenting on a pluralistic and democratic India is “not merely ironical but perverse”.

In her concluding remarks, she described Pakistan as a country soaked in red – “the red of the bloodshed from the terrorism it sponsors around the world; the red of its debt-riddled national balance sheets; and the red of the shame its people feel for their government having failed to serve their actual interests.”

The UN Human Rights Council session is taking place from February 26 to April 5.

Last year, India emphasized the need for an environment free of terror for normal ties with Pakistan. (Agencies)

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